1. Indian Administration vide DGS Order No. 02 of 2012 had banned the usage of Thuraya, Iridium and other such satellites in the Indian waters.
2. However, based on the recognition by IMO vide MSC. 451 (99) for Iridium Satellite LLC as one of the recognized mobile satellite service for use in the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS), Indian Administration has now issued DGS Order No. 09 of 2023, superseding DGS Order No. 02 of 2012, permitting the usage of Iridium Mobile Satellite communication equipment under GMDSS in the Indian waters, subject to following conditions:
a. Merchant ships may install and keep the Iridium equipment active in Indian Territorial waters, provided the equipment is registered and certified as per the prevailing rules of the Flag of the ship and is used only onboard ship and the portable Iridium sets may not be carried onto Indian Land Territory.
b. Iridium Satellite equipment is to be used in GMDSS exclusively for Maritime Radiocommunications relating to Distress and Safety, Search and Rescue and for receiving Maritime Safety Information (MSI) from ship's fixed installations only.
c. The ships transiting or visiting in Indian waters shall continue to declare IMEI number of the equipment in the Pre-Arrival Notification on Security (PANS).
3. Thuraya Satellite Equipment is not an integral part of Maritime Radiocommunication system under Global Maritime Distress and Safety Systems (CMDSS) and its usage is continued to be banned in Indian Waters.
4. The ship-owners, ship-masters and ship-agents are required to mandatorily declare details of such satellite phones prior arrival into Indian Waters through the Pre-Arrival Notification on Security (PANS) systems.
5. Owners/operators and masters are advised to take note of above and ensure compliance.
This Technical Circular and the material contained in it is provided only for the purpose of supplying current information to the reader and not as an advice to be relied upon by any person. While we have taken utmost care to be as factual as possible, readers/ users are advised to verify the exact text and content of the Regulation from the original source/ issuing Authority.